Customer story: Kelso Care

How Kelso Care entirely cut agency use, reduced admin from 2 days to 2 hours, and simplified CQC inspections by switching to RotaCloud








November 2023

Key features used

Reports Rota planning Time & Attendance

Kelso Care Consortium Ltd is a small family business that has been providing care to people with learning difficulties and complex needs since 1996 in Birmingham. Across their 4 sites, Kelso offers residential care and community, supported living for 32 clients in packages of 30-hour roles or continuous one-to-one supervision.

The challenge

Nicola Johnson has 27 years experience in social care, with 5-6 of those at Kelso Care as a manager.

Managing schedules in care is difficult, especially in a changing environment. With ever-evolving requirements and staffing needs, rotas became a real pain for Nicola and her team, who were still using manual paper-based systems such as Word & Excel. All of this combined created many inefficiencies and many more headaches.

Before RotaCloud, a lot of time went into covering shifts and altering the rotas accordingly. "You can plan the week and somebody can go off and that can be your key person and you have to change everything around. Inevitably, when you're making those kind of changes, you forget to communicate that to someone.” So, from that, more issues are created.

When it came to wages day, Nicola and two senior members of staff would spend 6 hours collating and checking paper timesheets against the paper rotas. Even after all of this work alongside the two days preparing for payroll, Nicola and her team would generally run into some discrepancies, leading to confusion, out-of-cycle payments, and money concerns from staff. This was hugely labour intensive - and costly, too.

“With local authorities, what they pay you to deliver care - a very small percentage of that is towards operational costs. So that time spent comes out of that pot of money, without question.”

When receiving feedback from staff, Nicola found that the main issue was shifts: knowing shifts far ahead of time and if wages will be correct. So, looking for a solution to this, Nicola found RotaCloud.

We've gone literally from us having to spend maybe 2 days preparing for payroll to it taking us maybe 2 hours - so that’s a huge difference to us.
Nicola Johnson
Manager, Kelso Care

The solution

After a few months of using RotaCloud’s shift scheduling, Time & Attendance, and reporting features, Nicola found how much easier it is and how much it benefits everyone involved - from management and staff to CQC inspections.

“I don’t have to worry. “Are my rotas covered? Are my services safe?” I can see what’s covered and what’s not, and I don't have to bother people.”

Time & costs

Due to automatic timesheets and reporting, the 2 days of preparing for payroll has dropped to just 2 hours - and it is all done by just one person, the company administrator, and none of the care team. This has freed so much time to allow Nicola and her team to focus on supporting their clients, ensuring consistent CQC compliance.

“One of the major things for RotaCloud for us is that if we are changing shifts, staff can know well ahead of time.”

Staff are automatically notified, which saves Nicola so much time in ringing around, and those uncovered shifts are immediately sent out as Open Shifts for staff to pick up.

Nicola is also able to track labour costs to ensure that they aren’t going over-budget. Seeing as one error of over-delivering by a couple of hours each day can lead to a huge loss - a loss of money that they won’t get back - overseeing this from a management perspective has been great for Nicola.

“I can tell you exactly how many people I’ve got on each site, on any given day, and the costs associated with having those.”

What’s more, with employees being able to see all available shifts, Kelso can utilise all their skilled staff across all their sites. This has removed the need for agency staff, which was so costly for them.

“Our agency use has all but disappeared since we’ve put RotaCloud in because staff are able to see and go, “Oh yeah, I can pick up that shift in 3 weeks’ time because I’m going on holiday and I want some extra money,” - so that’s been really really helpful for them.”

Employee experience

Feedback from staff has been really positive. Other than the fun they have with the photos as they clock in and out (many memes have been created from these, Nicola tells), they feel motivated to use the system because it means they don’t have to laboriously fill out timesheets but can still keep track of their hours and know they will be paid correctly.

“When everyone is feeling the pinch, it’s important that they understand how much they’re going to earn and how much they’ve done - so that’s been really good.”

Audit trail

From a CQC perspective, Nicola can easily show Kelso Care’s compliance with just a few clicks, instead of hours to days of preparing sheets of reports for inspectors to also scour through. The saved time and costs benefit both sides. Kelso is able to focus that saved time and costs into their service users’ care while CQC can swiftly get through all the necessary reports they need, clearly seeing how Kelso puts their clients first.

With everything documented and digitalised, all information is available to provide as evidence. Real-time data from timesheets and clocking in reports shows who is on-site and ensures the appropriate staffing levels for safety.

“I can show that my service is flexible to meet the needs of the clients we’re supporting,” Nicola said. “We’ve got that audit history of what the shift was, who’s created it, who’s picked it up, who may have swapped it - all of those give us a good audit trail that works towards our quality assurance, knowing that we’ve got the right people in the right places at the right time.”

RotaCloud allows Nicola to oversee the whole company, ensuring expert safeguarding and supervision, and easily access the data to prove that Kelso Care provides a safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led service from a CQC perspective.

“Happy staff is happy service users. That’s how it’s driven. And RotaCloud enables us to do that.”

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